London: HSBC Holdings Plc will invest $1 billion (Dh3.67 billion) in a green bond portfolio to fund projects in renewables, energy efficiency and climate adaptation.

It will also purchase social and sustainability bonds to fund small to medium-sized enterprises in developing public transportation, education and health care, the bank said in an e- mailed statement. It has already committed $350 million of the total sum and plans to invest the rest without a specific timeline, “when the right projects come along,” according to a spokesman.

The debt will be aligned with the Green Bond Principles, a voluntary set of guidelines to help define what makes a bond green. The asset was pioneered by the World Bank in 2008 and the market has grown rapidly with over $80 billion issued over the past five years according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

“HSBC understands that action to support the transition to a low carbon economy also brings social and economic benefits,” said Spencer Lake, global head of capital financing. “We are building our business for the long term and over the last 10 years HSBC has developed its approach to climate change.”